The PS2 has received an overwhelming amount of racers in its short life-span thus far, and it shows no signs of slowing down, as the titles in this genre keep on stacking up, one after the other. Yet another PS2 racer is in the works in the form of Race of Champions, and so far there’s nothing but good things to say.
One of the most rewarding features to come from racing games is the fact that you can see all your dream cars -- that you would die to have and that rappers have a whole handful of -- in the form of polygons, and with technology rapidly growing, the sense of realism that developers are now creating is unreal. With that said, RoC features more than twenty different rally racers from top companies such as Peugeot, Saab, and Toyota, and amazingly, each car is comprised of around 17,000 polygons. Climax (UK) has also incorporated beautiful particle effects -- the vibrant lights glistening from the car, the smoke and dust fluttering from the rear, leaving an amazingly alluring trail of the car’s path.
Climax (UK) has also put a lot of emphasis into the damage model and have been well at work in hopes of creating one of the most realistic damage effect systems yet. "DYNE" is what their system is referred to and its outcome is quite impressive to say the least. The expected damage reactions are all present, you know, the regular fender benders and dents in the side doors. However, Climax (UK) has taken this simple method and bumped it one step further -- windows can shatter, doors can fly right off of the car, tires can get blown -- which engenders an astonishing sense of realism. This feat is something very few competitors can say they have accomplished with their respective racers.
RoC also boasts myriad modes such as Rally Cross, Follow the Leader, Relay, Hill Climb and more. Rally Cross is the integral mode, while the others add a nice bit of diversity to the gameplay. Taking a different rout from most games, RoC will also contain a rider in the passenger side. Though, this passenger is no mere extra; he will help you fully throughout the course of the race -- giving you advise, complimenting you, yelling when you make a mistake, similar to a Drivers’ Ed. teacher. This part of the game is really inventive and we’re eagerly waiting to see how the final product works and how much of an effect it actually makes.
This game is looking very promising so far, but unfortunately this is all the info we have for you fervid racing fans for now. Stay tuned to PSX Extreme, as the game has plenty of development time left, and E3 is right around the corner.
4/11/2002 Joseph Comunale